ACCA - The global body for professional accountants

Corporate reporting

Corporate reporting

Author details

Ian Welch

Name: Ian Welch

Role: Head of policy

Organisation: ACCA

1 January 2012 This report summarises research that ACCA carried out with investors to get their views on whether they still valued the annual report and what they needed from it.

The state of corporate reporting has become a source of increasing comment and debate in recent years. The advent of the global financial crisis has shone an unforgiving light on the purpose and effectiveness of companies' reports. Is there still a place for the traditional annual report?

To address this question ACCA carried out a survey of 500 report users in the UK, US and Canada, whether they still valued the information the report gave them, or whether they preferred to rely on other sources. Perhaps reassuringly, 50% of our respondents confirmed that the report is still their primary or only source of information. However there were criticisms including:

  • 47% thought reports were too long
  • 35% felt reports are too backward facing
  • 40% said that reports are too general purpose to meet their needs
  • 35% thought they are too complex in their current form.

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Published: 12 Apr 2012